Though we may fancy ourselves to be members of an interconnected community, the truth is that only 4% of Solomon Islands population has access to the internet according to latest survey findings.
The 2012-2013 Household Income and Expenditure Survey (HIES) Provincial Analytical Report found out that 13% of those who use internet are located in urban areas while 2% are located in rural areas.
All across the nine provinces 47% of the people access internet at their workplaces followed by usages from mobile phones 18% and school facilities 15%.
The findings showed that workplace is the most common facility where internet is frequently accessed in Choiseul, Renbel, Malaita, Makira and Temotu provinces.
In Honiara, the education/school facility is the main facility for internet access, and in Guadalcanal province, the main facility is the cafe.
In Isabel province, households mainly access the internet through their mobile phones.
According to the Internet World Stats, Solomon Islands are recorded to have 56,022 internet users as of November 2015 out of the total estimated population of 615,804.
The services provided by Our Telekom and Bemobile are reported to have improve internet access in the country.
Bemobile with its 3G mobile broadband services so far have improved access to Internet and on-line services in the Honiara area.
And the recent installation of Our Telekom newly ground station for the O3b Network’s medium earth orbit (MEO) satellite service at Henderson is expected to transform the lives of all Solomon Islanders with fast and cost effective internet access for health, education, business and leisure.
Our Telekom office said that O3b is the first step in a comprehensive strategic investment by Our Telekom in Internet across the Solomon Islands which will include the SOCC submarine cable, made accessible to the highly populated provinces of Guadalcanal, Western, and Malaita via a new microwave fixed network.
By TEDDY KAFO